Wednesday, October 19, 2011

How To: Planting Bulbs

Even though we will be falling back soon, meaning setting the clocks back an hour, I am still eagerly looking forward to spring.  There is no better way to guarantee a beautiful start to the season than to plant bulbs that will bloom after the last frost.  This past spring, I had to refrain myself from buying every allium and hyacinth that I came across, so this spring I am doing my due diligence and planting my very own. I plan on either just staring at them (I know very strange, but I love flowers) or incorporating them into bouquets.

How to: It is key to plant your bulbs before the first frost, the optimum months being  September to late-November.  There are a variety of flowers that you can choose from - daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, alliums, crocuses, and irises. It is best to plant them in the earth, but if you live in a city that can definitely be a challenge. I opted to place the bulbs in a planter that could hold both the alliums and hyacinths.  When planting, dig a hole about 6 inches deep, place the bulb into the potting soil and then fill in the hole.  The final step is to water.  

 (The essentials - potting soil, a hand shovel and a water can)
 (I love alliums because of their lilac colored petals and sturdy oval shape)
(Hyacinths are such a fragrant flower and the Blue Jacket variety will look perfect in a bouquet in my living room)
 (The allium bulb submerged in 6 inches of dirt)
(The hyacinth bulb is iridescent purple in color)
 (Watering is essential after planting the bulbs. Our dog Mickey was very interested in the process)

A few things: Squirrels really like bulbs. I have a friendly squirrel that thoroughly enjoys his 7 a.m. morning ritual of going from box to box to dig in the dirt for his food that he apparently enjoys hiding there.  To avoid this, you can add either wire fencing or netting to prevent them from eating the bulbs.

Bulbs can be bought at your local hardware store, Home Depot or at a variety of places on-line.  Here are a few Bulbs Direct, Dutch Bulbs,  and Tulip World.
(Our tomato eating, box digging friend)

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